Installing baseboard - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 33 Old 09-19-2014, 05:25 PM Thread Starter
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Installing baseboard

So my in-laws have contracted me to install some baseboard for them, and its all shaping up to be a pretty simple project. The one spot I'm in a bit of a quandry on is what faster to use, so here's the question. Given that the moulding is 3/4 MDF and that a 2 inch faster is enough to reach through the molding and drywall and hit a stud, which would you go with, a brad nail or a staple? I'm assuming that a staple would hold better at the expense of being harder to fill, but I'd love any other advise

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post #2 of 33 Old 09-19-2014, 05:42 PM
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Just go with a 15ga or 16ga and you'll be fine.
One in the plate, one in the studs at the top , caulk the top edge, fill, paint, collect, crack a beer.
Steel studs or wood frame?
What kind of profile? Or is it flat stock?
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post #3 of 33 Old 09-19-2014, 05:46 PM Thread Starter
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Wood studs, mostly flat profile with a decorative profile along the top. Also no acess to a finish nailer. Don't own one, don't wat to drop a Benjamin on one, hence the nails or staples question

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post #4 of 33 Old 09-19-2014, 07:38 PM
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It amazes me these days that nobody has heard of a bag of nails.2" brads aren't going to get it.Said yourself it's a simple project so go get some finish nails and a hammer and use the correct nails.You won't have to drop a benny and it will be done right.
Seams nobody can do a damn thing these das without a air nailer. Don't get me wrong ,I own a trailer full of them but use them to be efficient and make a living.For DIY stuff:Learn how to use a hammer and get it done.Tired of hearing you can't get 3 boards put up because you don't have the correct nail gun.
Rant over
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post #5 of 33 Old 09-19-2014, 07:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mako1 View Post
It amazes me these days that nobody has heard of a bag of nails.2" brads aren't going to get it.Said yourself it's a simple project so go get some finish nails and a hammer and use the correct nails.You won't have to drop a benny and it will be done right.
Seams nobody can do a damn thing these das without a air nailer. Don't get me wrong ,I own a trailer full of them but use them to be efficient and make a living.For DIY stuff:Learn how to use a hammer and get it done.Tired of hearing you can't get 3 boards put up because you don't have the correct nail gun.
Rant over
I wasn't sure if the op had a nailer or not. He asked if a brad or staple would be sufficient.
Now I know that he doesn't, I would have to agree ; just pick up some nails and a nail set and your good to go.
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post #6 of 33 Old 09-19-2014, 08:19 PM Thread Starter
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Did I ever say that I couldn't without a nail gun? Seems like a rather unfair assumption. Also,, guys, the question was a or b, there's no need to insult me because I was asking a or b. Now you're right, I could use a hammer and a nailset, but given that there's several hundred feet of trim, I dont want to.

Again, the question is multiple choice between A and B. If your answer isn't A or B, kindly take your insults somewhere else. You have your way, I have mine, that doesn't make me lazy or an idiot

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post #7 of 33 Old 09-19-2014, 08:22 PM Thread Starter
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Additional point of interest, have you every tried driving any sort of nail into MDF by hand? It doesn't end well

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post #8 of 33 Old 09-19-2014, 08:26 PM
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Definitely brad nail. Staples should never be seen. Also a few little dots of construction adhesive every foot or so on the back of the board goes a lomg way.

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post #9 of 33 Old 09-19-2014, 09:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by epicfail48 View Post
Did I ever say that I couldn't without a nail gun? Seems like a rather unfair assumption. Also,, guys, the question was a or b, there's no need to insult me because I was asking a or b. Now you're right, I could use a hammer and a nailset, but given that there's several hundred feet of trim, I dont want to.

Again, the question is multiple choice between A and B. If your answer isn't A or B, kindly take your insults somewhere else. You have your way, I have mine, that doesn't make me lazy or an idiot
You could 'cheat' somewhat and predrill the holes after you have found and marked the studs and be done VERY quickly with just a hammer and nails.



One of the guys that gave me some of my first work as a trim carpenter REFUSED to allow any guys working under him to use any sort of nailguns until they had mastered their hammer first.

Newbies always started off doing baseboard in closets. Once they stopped doofing the baseboard in the closets they got to come out and do the baseboards in the main areas.

Then he would put 'em on crown moulding and make them learn to use their hammer and nailset ABOVE their head...

If you got all of THAT down he would have you hammering oak treads down as he cut them and put them in place...

When I would 'doof' the wood with my hammer, He would say stuff like, "What do you got against that wood 'aside of your hammer?".

As far as your project is concerned: You could get away with an even smaller nailgun and hole left to fill just by using a little glue. Nails should only really 'hold it' until the glue dries...
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post #10 of 33 Old 09-20-2014, 12:31 AM Thread Starter
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I reread my earlier posts and i just want to say sorry if i overreacted. It just gets trying to ask an A or B question and get Q. Probably doesnt help that i posted that during work, which never puts me in a good mood.

At any rate, i did forget to mention that i was planning on doing a dab of liquid nails every so often anyway, and i do know that a finish nail is the 'normal' way of doing this. I just dont have a finish nailer and was debating whether the greater hold of a staple would be worth the trouble of filling in after it. Ill probably just stick with brads, i just wanted to know if anybody has tried this.

Oneal: Im no stranger to predrilling a hole to make driving a nail easier, but again, im looking at about two hundred feet of trim, and when faced with the time difference between drilling a hole, driving a nail and setting the nail by hand, or popping in 2 brads, ill always take the option that involves a nailgun and less chance of nailing the mdf with a hammer. Or running out of drilling power. At any rate, im sorry i snapped

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post #11 of 33 Old 09-20-2014, 01:32 AM
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My post was not directed at you.It was just a general statement from what I see going on these days.From some of these forums it seems like guys will spend and hour or several days posting trying to figure out how to use a power tool to get a job done that would have taken a 1/2 hours with a handtool if they would have just done it.
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post #12 of 33 Old 09-20-2014, 02:52 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mako1 View Post
My post was not directed at you.It was just a general statement from what I see going on these days.From some of these forums it seems like guys will spend and hour or several days posting trying to figure out how to use a power tool to get a job done that would have taken a 1/2 hours with a handtool if they would have just done it.
Its all good, im proud to say im not one of those guys. Personally, i weigh the pros and cons of different methods and choose the most cost effective one, weighing time as a cost. I have nothing against using a hammer and nails if the occasion calls for it, but in this case a hand tool isnt feasible for a number of reasons, mostly time, amount of nails and MDF's particular dislike of being nailed.

I understand the dislike of people turning mountains into molehills and spending far too much time trying to using the fancy toys, your post just touched a nerve a little. Again, i do apologize for any snippiness on my part.

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post #13 of 33 Old 09-20-2014, 12:02 PM
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I wouldn't use staples unless they were narrow crown then I still would think hard before using them, a regular staple won't set into MDF and even the narrow crown staples pucker the surface pretty bad. The staples will cause you way more work. I really don't know what your reference to a brad is, if it is a pinner chances are it won't hold well.

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post #14 of 33 Old 09-20-2014, 04:47 PM
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I wouldn't use staples unless they were narrow crown then I still would think hard before using them, a regular staple won't set into MDF and even the narrow crown staples pucker the surface pretty bad. The staples will cause you way more work. I really don't know what your reference to a brad is, if it is a pinner chances are it won't hold well.
You are correct about how MDF acts when stapled.
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post #15 of 33 Old 09-21-2014, 11:52 AM
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I use a 18 ga brad nailer on mdf all the time. You have to lower the pressure so the nails dont blow through and I always use adhesive on the back and 2 inch nails caulk and paint.. never had an issue
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post #16 of 33 Old 09-21-2014, 12:03 PM
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I have put up several hundred feet of 5 1/2" base. Only used 2" brads. Both MDF and finger jointed pine. No problems of any type. Remember, on base you have more than just studs to which to fasten. There is always at least a 2x4 behind the sheet rock at the floor level.

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post #17 of 33 Old 09-21-2014, 02:07 PM
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Only time I use brads on base is lining up outside corners to make them look nice. 2 1/2 15 or 16g finish nails for the studs/plate.

Ive never seen glue used nor have I used to myself on base. IMO that is completely unnecessary. If youre hitting studs with the finish nails that is more than enough to hold a piece of trim. If you ever have to take it off in the future you may be kicking yourself for having to replace the sheet rock if you go with glue.
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post #18 of 33 Old 09-21-2014, 02:38 PM
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Brad nailer id steer clear of staples in finishing lines will be a real pig to fill
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post #19 of 33 Old 09-21-2014, 06:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by epicfail48 View Post
So my in-laws have contracted me to install some baseboard for them, and its all shaping up to be a pretty simple project. The one spot I'm in a bit of a quandry on is what faster to use, so here's the question. Given that the moulding is 3/4 MDF and that a 2 inch faster is enough to reach through the molding and drywall and hit a stud, which would you go with, a brad nail or a staple? I'm assuming that a staple would hold better at the expense of being harder to fill, but I'd love any other advise
Actually on baseboard, I typically use both... 16 gauge along the baseplate and 18 gauge along the top edge (typically thinner) to hit the studs. Don't see any reason 18 gauge wouldn't work for both, may just want a few more along the baseplate.
Incidentally, I don't think you overreacted at all earlier. I have also spent an hour or more figuring out how to use a power tool on a job that can be completed with a hand tool in a few minutes. But.... the next time that job, or a similar one, comes up, I don't need to repeat the learning curve and the odds of screwing up the big job are much less. I've noticed that many times on this, and other, forums is that many times the responses focus on the immediate task and fail to consider the number of future projects that could be taken on once the tools and skill sets are in place. JMHO

Incidentally... and this is not intended as spam..... I happen to have two Porter Cable FN250 16 gauge finish nailers. As I am not ambidextrous, I would part with one of them for a Grant instead of a benny plus ship. If interested PM me.

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post #20 of 33 Old 09-22-2014, 12:23 AM Thread Starter
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Incidentally... and this is not intended as spam..... I happen to have two Porter Cable FN250 16 gauge finish nailers. As I am not ambidextrous, I would part with one of them for a Grant instead of a benny plus ship. If interested PM me.
Thhas a very temping prospect, I'll have to think on hat

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